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Prevalence of obesity and associated sociodemographic and lifestyle factors in Morocco

  • K El Rhazi (a1), C Nejjari (a1), A Zidouh (a2), R Bakkali (a2), M Berraho (a1) and P Barberger Gateau (a3)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 06 July 2010

In Morocco, the association between obesity/overweight and socio-demographic and lifestyle factors is poorly understood. The present study aimed to investigate this association in a representative sample of the Moroccan population aged 18 years and above.


This is a cross-sectional study using a questionnaire including demographic, socio-economic and physical activity items. Height and weight were measured and BMI was computed. The association between obesity (BMI ≥ 30·0 kg/m2) or overweight (25·0 ≤ BMI < 29·9 kg/m2) and the other variables was analysed using multiple binomial logistic regression, separately in men and women.


The whole Moroccan territory.


A total of 2891 subjects took part in the survey (1430 men and 1461 women).


The prevalence of obesity was 20·9 % in women and 6·0 % in men (P < 0·0001). The prevalence of overweight was 32·9 % in women v. 26·8 % in men (P < 0·0001). In women, the risk of obesity and overweight increased with age, with the highest risk being in individuals aged 45–54 years (OR = 3·02, 95 % CI 2·06, 4·44) compared to individuals <35 years old. Married women were more prone to obesity and overweight (OR = 2·42, 95 % CI 1·50, 3·91) than single women. In men, the risk of obesity and overweight increased with average family income (OR = 2·62, 95 % CI 1·40, 4·87 for family income ≥5000 MAD/month compared to <2000 MAD/month) and in married persons (OR = 3·75, 95 % CI 1·78, 7·81) compared to single individuals.


These results contribute to target groups in whom prevention programmes could be implemented.

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